BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Royal Farms’s world famous fried chicken has landed the top spot on a “Food & Wine” list of best gas station foods.

The magazine had this to say about Baltimore’s favorite fried treat:

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“If you live in Maryland, Delaware, Virginia or Pennsylvania, you have the distinct privilege of enjoying some of the best fast-food fried chicken à la gas station in the form of Royal Farms. This Southern gas station chain is famous for their crispy fried chicken, flaky dinner rolls and breaded potato wedges known as “western fries.” If a glance at chicken-filled buffet trays glowing golden under the heat lamp alongside lotto tickets and Lays chips puts you off, check yourself and just order it already. Locations abound, and some are even coming to New Jersey soon.”

“It’s the best chicken you’ll ever have,” Royal Farms district leader Ricki Ettinger tells WJZ. “It’s perfect.”

Every piece is breaded in house, then fried to perfection and served up to hungry customers.

“We take simple, fresh ingredients and we turn them into extraordinary famous food,” Ettinger says. “And it’s awesome to be a part of that.”

The recognition, while unexpected, is not really a surprise to loyal customers.

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“It’s really good,” one woman said. “I like chicken with a crunch, and I can always get a crunch from Royal Farms Chicken.”

“It’s just cooked right,” said one man. “You go some places and it’s just not cooked right, crispy, doesn’t have the right taste.”

Store leader Jay Garcia’s Hunt Valley store sees about 2,000 customers for lunch every day.

“A lot of chicken, sandwiches, everything we have,” he says. “We make everything fresh so they definitely love our food.”

Royal Farms is the only Maryland company to make Food and Wine’s list, and one of only two on the east coast.

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